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Searching For A New Job – When You’ve Worked At The Same Place For Years

Job hunting can be an extremely intimidating and time-consuming process. The practice can be even more overwhelming if you’ve worked for the same company for many years. If you’ve been off the market for a while it can be difficult to get back in the mindset of hunting for a new opportunity and your approach to this process may need some fine-tuning. However, if you’re committed to pursuing the next step, here are a few tips for beginning your job search:

Update Your Resume

If you’ve been with the same company for several years, chances are your résumé hasn’t been updated in a while. Giving your résumé a facelift is the first and most obvious step when beginning a new job search. Your résumé is an employer’s first glimpse of your qualifications and experience. You don’t want to omit all the great things you’ve done in your existing role.

However, updating a résumé requires more than just listing your tasks. You’ll want to quantify your time and explain how you’ve added value. Have you saved the company money? Did you create a new program or process? Did you lead a team that accomplished a lofty goal? These items show employers that you can perform and make an impact. You’ll also need to work on the formatting of your résumé. Use varying font sizes, bold and italic typing, and bulleted lists to create flow for the reader. The presentation and layout are just as important as the content when it comes to first impressions. It may be worth it to use executive resume writers in order to have professionals help you make your résumé perfect.

Develop Your Online Presence

Recruiters and hiring managers are constantly scouring online profiles for eligible candidates. If a recruiter likes what they see on your resume, they’ll usually follow-up with a quick online search.

Recruiters and hiring managers are constantly scouring online profiles for eligible candidates. If a recruiter likes what they see on your resume, they’ll usually follow-up with a quick online search. This means you have to clean up your online profile as well. Update accounts like LinkedIn with your most recent employment history and ensures other social outlets like Facebook and Twitter look professional. If you haven’t been active in a while, you might consider posting articles or tweeting quotes relevant to your field. This is appealing to employers and demonstrates that you’re “in the know” when it comes to industry trends.

Self-Assess

Self-assessment is extremely important during the job hunting process. When working for an organization over an extended period of time, you can easily lose sight of your needs and wants as an employee. It’s easy to get stuck in a routine that doesn’t suit your strengths. You may also get accustomed to a particular cultural style and may feel unable to quickly identify what you’re looking for in your next employer.

It can be worthwhile to take inventory of your current employer. Identify what you like and don’t like about the environment, benefits, and role. Here are some of the items you might want to consider as you think about your next gig. While this list is certainly not comprehensive, it offers a starting point for self-reflection:

  • Best Skills
  • Preferred Industry
  • Commute Time (Preferred Location)
  • Office or Cubicle
  • Dress Code
  • Salary Requirements
  • Preferred Personalities
  • Company Size (Number of Employees)
  • Level of Responsibility
  • Opportunities for Advancement
  • Office Hours

Revisit Your Network

Networking and personal relationships play a huge role when it comes to job hunting. In fact, a recent study found that 85 percent of all jobs are filled based on networking. Therefore, you can’t underestimate the value of networking. You can start by reviewing your existing professional network. LinkedIn has a great feature that allows you to search connections using a few specific keywords. This feature may also help you develop new connections. New connections are critical as you embark on your job hunting quest. You can ask a mutual friend to introduce you to a new colleague, or you can join networking groups and associations. Many larger metropolitan areas have community groups dedicated exclusively to networking functions. You never know where these new relationships may lead!

Consider Volunteerism

Volunteerism is a great way to develop new skills in a safe environment. If you identify any gaps in the skills required for a new job and the skills you currently have in your repertoire, it can be beneficial to consider a volunteer opportunity. Choose a cause you care about and find ways to get involved. Many nonprofit organizations are looking for professional skill sets like accounting, marketing, development, and management. Additionally, many hiring managers prefer candidates with volunteer experience. It demonstrates initiative and leadership development which are highly valued skills in the workforce.

Dress to Impress

Once you’ve identified what you’re looking for in an employer and made a few connections with some companies on your list, it’s time to prep for the interview process. Professionalism in appearance is definitely an important part of this step. If you’ve been out of the job hunt market for a while you may be wondering what to wear to a job interview. Experts recommend wearing neutral colors like black, gray and navy. Apparel should be professional and modest. You should also make sure you are properly groomed (nails and hair) and clean-shaven (men). Your appearance can have a lasting impression so don’t skimp on this step!

These tips are just a few of the many things to consider as you enter the job market. Changing jobs after a long stint with an organization can be quite a process, but with a little prep and planning you’ll be well on your way to landing your next gig!

Walter Bodell
Walter Bodell
WALTER is a former accountant and financial advisor. He now runs a MedSpa with his son, and consults startup companies. In his free time, Walter likes to golf, cheer on the Arizona Diamondbacks, and write for various business blogs.

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